Applied Science - Science and Math (6A)
Pre Lab

  • Exploring lab procedure.
  • Investigating critical thinking.
  • critical thinking
  • hypothesis
  • science
  • scientific methods
  • worksheet
  • examples of beakers, microscope, and other lab equipment

Students determine scientific method.


If this is the first science class of the new school year, have students discuss their impressions of science.  Students’ knowledge of science should be good if they have used the Integrating  Science, Math, and Technology program throughout elementary school.  If starting this program for the first time, or only in the second year, students may have difficulty with some of the activities.  We suggest you start with some of the fourth or fifth grade Science and Math activities. 

Science is a built up accumulation of content and process.  However, if students have not been exposed to content, they cannot make connections to truly understand the scientific method.   “Light bulbs” should begin turning on if students have been prepared to understand that math and science are the foundation of our society

  1. Discuss your particular lab procedures.  Stress safety when using any item in the lab.  If a lab is not available, make sure students know the rules of your classroom. 
  2. Introduce students to a science lab by showing them beakers, flasks, or any other science equipment.  See if they remember what the items are used for.  Students should be cautious and careful when using equipment.  Scientific equipment is used for investigation. 
  3. Misconceptions in science is very common.  You may want to go over some of these misconceptions listed below.

    misconception right answer
    1. snakes are slimy no, they have scales
    2. dinosaur is the biggest animal ever to live no, the great blue whale, which is living today is the largest; dinosaurs are the largest land animal
    3.  penguins and polar bears live at the North Pole only polar bears; penguins live only in the south pole region
    lightning never strikes twice it can strike in the same place
    4.  You can't get sunburned on a cloudy day Ultraviolet rays, which cause your skin to burn is present on cloudy days
    5. Sun is farthest from the Earth in winter Earth is closes to Sun in December

     If students have gone through the entire I. Science MaTe program, many of these misconceptions have been corrected.

  4. Go over scientific methods with the students by using the enclosed lab sheet.  Remember, there is usually more than one way to answer a question.  This can be a homework assignment followed by discussion of students answers.
  5. Suggested answers:

Question 1.  What effects do different colored lights have on plant growth?  Key points:  Students should remember to have a control so they can compare their experiment with a plant that is not part of the experiment.  They might design an experiment to evaluate the effect of colored lights.  Students may use different colored lights but they must use the same type of plant. 

Question 2.  How do you tell if two rocks are the same?  Key points:  Scientist could describe the minerals in the rocks and compare the minerals to see if they are the same.  They also might test the rocks to see if they have other similar properties like density or color.

Question 3.  Does smoking cigarettes cause lung cancer in humans?  Key points:  This is a hard one.  A scientist cannot force humans to smoke and then see if they die.  However, they can study the health of people who smoke and don't smoke.  Scientists then see if there is a higher percentage of death due to cancer over a 20 year period by recording which percentage died due to cancer.  A scientist also may look at county medical records.  They study the information related to causes of death of people and then calculate the percentage due to cancer.

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